LAKE GROVE - A woman knocked unconscious in a car accident was narrowly able to escape her burning car thanks to a pair of good Samaritans and two Suffolk police officers.
Authorities say Stephanie McNamee, of Holbrook, was unconscious following a three-car crash on Middle Country Road in Lake Grove when her Ford Focus caught fire.
Arthur Ward, of Bay Shore, says he leapt into action as the flames began to spread.
"I ran and tried to open the door ... I couldn't get the door open,” says Ward.
Ward was joined moments later by officers David Vlacich and Brian Bordreaux, as well as fellow bystander David Ayala.
Ayala was handed a fire extinguisher and tried to put out some of the flames. The windows on the car were broken and the men tried to pry open the passenger door, but were driven back by the heat. They then managed to open the driver-side door and unbuckle McNamee’s seat belt.
“The flames were coming up from the dashboard so I just reached in the car, put the driver in like a bear hug and just started yanking her out of the car," says Vlacich.
The group continued to pry at the door and pull on McNamee until they finally got her out. The car was nearly consumed by flames when they did.
McNamee is listed in critical condition at Stony Brook University Medical Center. News 12 Long Island has learned the other drivers involved in the crash are going to be OK. None of the rescuers were injured.